Equipment Reviews

Willsenton R8 (integrated TR/UL amplifier)

  • 106
  • 0
96


Footnotes:

There's been a bit of hype around this amp in the low cost audio space.
I purchased it from https://www.china-hifi-audio.com/ for $708 + $372 shipping = $1080
The price above is also $60 off normal, by selecting EL34 tubes instead of KT88 to come with it.

There is a write up on china-hifi-audio.com from the owner stating the price on this amp will be increasing by tiers over the next year.
By Feb 16th 2021 it will be priced at $893 (vs the $708 I just paid for it)

I will be reviewing this amp in the context that with shipping, somebody can acquire this amp for under $1300.

Let's start with tubes. It arrived with the stock Willsenton 3x 6sn7, 2x 6sl7, and 4x EL34. (9x tubes total)

Right off the rip, the stock tubes are kinda meh (in comparison to other cheap tube alternatives).
I didn't let them burn in. I've read on other forums with burn in they are decent.
While I do generally like, and...

I love budget IEMs, CCA CST is my new #1 budget

  • 42
  • 0
Link to my review:

TLDW: it's great, the only issues are stage is smaller and upper treble is elevated with a crashy timbre.

AKG K371 review

  • 51
  • 0
SV Member MShenay has another great review, check it out:

HD560S Impressions from Oak Forest Audio

  • 59
  • 0
Please find impressions from SV member MShenay of Oakforest audio:

ES Lab ES-1A: Review and On-Going Impressions

  • 251
  • 1


First and foremost I want to thank the Team at ES Lab for giving my self the chance to hear this headphone! While minimal, the overall presentation in person is stunningly polished. The grain on the wood storage box has both a nice feel and look to it, there's even a pair of wood wings for the outer face of the cup which make the headphone lighter.

Additionally there are two sets of pads, a "dark" pad with a fabric center and another set of pads without the fabric. For this review the Dark Pads were used as they removed some mid-range etch at the expense of just a little top end energy.

Overall Sound Signature
ES-1A has a slightly dark neutral sound with a rich harmonic presentation. I find it's sound stage to be cohesive with good precision, it's mid-range is rich with a little added body. High frequencies are a bit rolled off but don't sound lifeless or lacking extension.

What impressed me the most was it's...

Hifiman Jade II - Reviews & On-going Impressions

Topping L30 - Budget King of Value

  • 261
  • 0


In a world with so many options and ever decreasing levels of distortion one has to ask what separates the many acceptable solid state amplifiers from the truly great! There's a dozen designs that all push the lower limits of measurable distortion, all of which falls far below our human threshold of hearing.

To explore that concept I figured it would be worthwhile to start by having a set standard for absolute greatness, and I'm happy to say the Bricasti M3 with Headphone is exactly that for me. After years of reviewing and Hi-Fi show demo's, press exclusive listens it is the only product offering that long awaited greatness I've been hunting for! With a truly amazing solid-state amplifier and top of the line DAC in tow I feel fully...

Cayin N6ii - Review & On Going Impressions

  • 353
  • 1

I want to start by thanking Andy of Cayin for giving me a chance to hear the N6ii with both it's A01 and T01 modules thru a brief in home demo. I've had a chance to hear quite a few of the Cayin Digital Audio Players over the years and they've always impressed me!

Some history for my self, I am a happy owner of a Hifiman HM901 that I run exclusively line out into a Custom iBasso PB2 amp. Sound quality of this system has for years been unchallenged by all of the modern Digital Audio Players I've heard. Still this old vintage player has terrible battery life, no streaming support and the amp it self is twice as thick as the already large player. So my little tower is by no means a shining example of "portable" sound quality. Price was around $1500...

Streamer/DDC Showdown: Pi2AES vs Sotm SMS200 Ultra Neo

  • 670
  • 0
TLDR: Pi2AES kicks some serious ass. Get a nice PSU


So I've been working on my digital side of things for a little while now, and have as of late been exploring networked output options. I'd started with a raspberry pi, and after hearing the difference that made vs direct USB to my PC, but also how the USB 2.0 ports on the pi4 differed from the USB 3.0 ports, and then how the pi3b+ actually sounded better (likely due to being a lower noise/power consumption board), I explored other options too.
A member of a group I am in told me that after trying the Pi2AES, it had actually beaten out his singxer SU-6, and so that seemed like a crazy option for the price, especially given as I'd been considering the singxer anyway!

Another network streamer that had been getting heaps of praise was the sms200 Ultra Neo, and so that was on my consideration list too. In the end, I got both, and wanted to share my...
Streamer/DDC Showdown: Pi2AES vs Sotm SMS200 Ultra Neo.

Review of the Pass Labs X350.8 stereo amplifier

  • 880
  • 0
Introduction
I have been thoroughly enjoying my Yamaha NS5000 speakers since I purchased them in early 2020. They have truly amazing imaging and a natural tonality that lets you settle into the music and really be convinced of the performances you hear. I have powered them with older Bryston 4BSST amplifiers in mono mode. I briefly tested a single 4BSST in stereo mode and was extremely impressed with further improvement in imaging, resolution and staging (likely due to better impedance matching). But despite the great sound I was getting I did wonder how far I could take sonic experience.
88


Optimizing my front end with a Lumin u1 mini streamer (powered by a Keces P8 ext PSU) feeding a Audio GD DI20HE digital converter before going into my denafrips terminator dac certainly provided a fantastic source. I noticed when adding the lumin and agd devices a blacker background with more microdetails and holographic layering that...

Topping D90 MQA review by Oak Forest Audio

  • 360
  • 1
SV member Mshenay at Oak forest audio has reviewed the Topping D90 MQA, please have a look:

Rockna wavedream balanced signature vs Denafrips Terminator (with v3 dsp board)

  • 621
  • 0
Please find this high end DAC head to head done by SV member Xecuter over here: Rockna Wavedream vs Denafrips Terminator

Denafrips Terminator Review

  • 1,011
  • 0
About me (audio experience history)

I’ve been in the audio game for about 10 years. I am mainly am a PC music lover. I just love listening to high end audio at my desk. I started with a superlux 668B and a cheap laptop. Even with those humble headphones I remember being surprised how much better they sounded over my basic laptop speakers and ever since those days I always strived to take incremental steps in improving my audio experience hopefully while enjoying all along.

My first serious audiophile headphones were the beyerdynamic DT990 pro 250 ohm again running out of a laptop. I was shocked by how incredible these sounded compared to my superlux. At the time the $200 CAD I spent on them seemed excessive but the reviews were positive. Little did I know how much more cash would be involved in further gains in sound quality! I met @Shahrose on head fi at my workplace at the time and he gave me incredible insights (and continues to do so to this day) that helped me...

Hyland Audio Saturn One Review (By Seltzertronics)

  • 877
  • 0
Review from the awesome Seltzertronics:

Top Bottom